Daniel Otto, Paralegal Apprentice at Direct Line Group, tells us about his apprenticeship experience in this case study.
What is your job title?
Why did you decide to do an apprenticeship?
I decided to do the apprenticeship so that I could learn my job in a more technical way. I wanted to learn about law generally, as well as knowing more about the types of law I practice as part of my job role.
What sort of activities do you do in your role?
In my current role I manage and litigate cases including those involving road traffic accidents. My role involves me guiding the client, usually from the defence stage of part 7 proceedings right through to the hearing. A lot of my role is phone-based, requires good time management skills and you have to be great with people as an upcoming court hearing is scary news for most families.
What have you enjoyed most about your apprenticeship?
For me, I have grown to love the almost ‘classroom feel’ to the online workshops. The online workshops are sessions with a real live person (not a robot). They are usually someone with an advanced practice of law and it is great to bounce off the other students using our video streams and have actual conversations about the law we are studying.
How have you found your training with Damar?
Training with Damar has been great. I kind of want to study all the time and then I realise that I am 28 and need a better social life. Learning to study again seven years after graduating has actually been an eye-opening process. I thought it would make me feel younger but then I realised that actually studying is a helpful tool that encourages mature behaviour as you learn to have a happy balance between work, study and the rest of real life.
What has been your biggest achievement as an apprentice?
For me, being the first paralegal apprentice from DLG Legal Services has been nerve racking. An achievement for me has been never falling behind in my work and the company using me as a reference point for guidance with other students looking to study within the company.
What have you contributed to Direct Line Group during your apprenticeship?
I think my apprenticeship has allowed me to be a more proactive worker and when I am handed more advanced files, I am able to reduce the technical lead’s responsibilities by being knowledgeable enough to ask less questions.
What are your plans after you complete your apprenticeship?
After my apprenticeship, I have the option to continue with my studies. I will likely continue my progression with the firm and look to move into a role where I am able to develop my skills and apply the ones I have learned to my new role. The apprenticeship opens doors to me that may not have been open to me (or at least as easily) before I started my studies.